Musical Museum

Address: Greater London, United Kingdom

Opening hours: Normal opening times are Tuesday - Sunday 11:00 am- 5:30 pm. 

Contact: Phone +44 20 8560 8108

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If you love music then you should not miss out on visiting the Musical Museum in London. The museum has been around for only a few decades but already offer an extensive collection of musical instruments, as well as a history of music.

The Musical Museum was founded by Frank Holland MBE in 1963. He was intent on preserving automatic musical instruments. He felt that self-playing instruments should be shared to future generations even if they would just be on display in a place such as the museum. Frank’s ideas on musical preservation are pioneer in the field. He believed that musical instruments should also be seen and not just be heard. Since his death, eager volunteers had continued his life’s work.

Today, the museum features separate galleries. You will find a gallery dedicated to putting the musical instruments on display. You will also find an auditorium or concert hall. Other amenities include a café, a lift, toilets and parking. Facilities also include disabled access in all of the museum’s areas. The environment is air controlled to protect the physical quality and the fidelity of the instruments.

The Musical Museum features the world’s largest compilations of historically-relevant musical rolls. There are also plenty of available archives on music and automatic instruments. Automatic instruments include tiny musical boxes and self-playing organs, pianos, violin players, orchestrelles and orchestrions.

You don’t just get to see the instruments but you may also get to hear them as they are, after all, self-playing. There is a gallery that recreates a street setting complete with shop windows featuring street instruments, musical toys and other musical devices.

If you visit the museum, you also get to learn more about how instruments play automatically and how to capture music. The exhibitions of music, instruments and related themes do change. The museum offers a unique musical journey that will take you into the past where you can enjoy the streaming music brought to you by automatic instruments that refuse to be relegated to the past. Many of the instruments featured in the museum have been restored to their tip-top playing condition.

There are also plenty of things to see in the area where the museum is located. However, you should be assured that a trip to the Musical Museum of London would already, in itself, provide you with a fulfilling afternoon. The museum is especially recommended for those who appreciate or who play music.